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Vegetarian Cassoulet
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An onion, carrot, and celery combination, called a mirepoix, is the basis for this rustic, rich, French dish. There are three steps to this recipe, including the preparation of lovely garlic bread crumbs. To save time, omit this step and replace crumbs with a French baguette or crusty whole grain bread. Don’t let all the steps and ingredients scare you – every bite will be worth your efforts.
serves 4 - 6

Ingredients

STEP ONE

Shallot and Sweet Onion Confit

2 tablespoons unsalted butter or olive oil

3/4 cup shallots, chopped

1-1/2 cups sweet yellow onion, chopped to same size as shallots

2 tablespoons water

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

 

STEP TWO

Cassoulet

1/3 cup olive oil

1/2 cup shallots, chopped

4 medium carrots, halved lengthwise and cut into 1-inch-wide pieces

3 celery ribs, cut into 1-inch-wide pieces

4 large garlic cloves, chopped

5 thyme sprigs

1/4 cup Italian parsley, chopped

1 bay leaf

1/8 teaspoon freshly ground cloves

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 15-ounce can cannellini or Great Northern beans, rinsed and drained

1 cup roasted butternut squash, mashed (about 1 small squash)*

1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, re-hydrated with boiling water; let stand for 5 minutes, drain

3-1/2 cups low sodium vegetable broth

1/3 cup red wine

2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

 

STEP THREE

Garlic Crumbs - Make garlic crumbs while cassoulet simmers

2 cups coarse fresh bread crumbs from a baguette

1/4 cup olive oil

2 teaspoons chopped garlic

1/4 cup chopped parsley

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

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Directions

STEP ONE

Shallot and Sweet Onion Confit

  1. Melt butter in large pot over medium-low heat. Add shallots and onions; stir to coat. Stir in water and salt. Cover pot; reduce heat to low. Cook until onions are tender, stirring often, about 20 minutes. Uncover and cook to evaporate excess water, 2 to 3 minutes.

Per serving: 26 calories, 2g fat, 0g sat fat, 3g carbohydrates, trace protein, 60mg sodium

Adapted from Molly Wizenberg’s Leek Confit recipe in Bon Appetit, October 2008

 

STEP TWO

Cassoulet

  1. Heat olive oil in a large heavy pot over medium heat. Add shallots, carrots, celery, garlic, thyme sprigs, parsley, bay leaf, cloves, salt and pepper and cook stirring occasionally, until softened and golden, about 15 minutes.
  2. Stir in beans, squash, tomatoes, broth, wine and vinegar and simmer, partially covered, stirring occasionally, until carrots are tender but not falling apart, about 30 minutes.
  3. Discard thyme sprigs and bay leaf.
  4. Add onion confit to cassoulet and stir well. Just before serving, sprinkle with garlic crumbs.

Per serving: 334 calories, 13g fat, 1g sat fat, 41g carbohydrates, 16g protein, 547mg sodium, 12g fiber,

190mg calcium

 

STEP THREE

Garlic Crumbs

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees with rack in middle. Toss bread crumbs with oil, garlic, parsley and 1/4 teaspoon each of salt and pepper in a bowl until well coated. Spread in a baking pan and toast in oven, stirring once halfway through, until crisp and golden, 12 to 15 minutes.
  2. Cool crumbs in pan. Store any remaining crumbs in glass jar or airtight container.

Per serving: 84 calories, 4g fat, 1g sat fat, 10g carbohydrates, 2g protein, 150mg sodium

Adapted from Gourmet Magazine 2008, Vegetarian Cassoulet, www.artandlemons.com/ and myself judy@outpost.coop

 

*How to Roast a Squash

  1. Set oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Cut the squash in half and remove the seeds. Place cut side down in a baking pan.
  3. Roast until squash is soft to touch and easy to pierce with a fork, about 30 minutes, depending upon the size of the squash.
  4. Frozen squash can also be used for this recipe.
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